Click on images
Figs, side view and cross section. Copyright W. T. Cooper
Female flowers. Copyright CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. Copyright CSIRO
Male & female flowers(?). Copyright CSIRO
10th leaf stage. Copyright CSIRO
Leaves and figs. Copyright CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. Copyright CSIRO
Ficus benjamina L.
Linnaeus, C. von (1767) Mantissa Plantarum: 129. Type: Habitat in India..
Ficus benjamina L. var. benjamina, The Gardens' Bulletin Singapore 17: 396(1960), Type: ?. Urostigma nitidum Miq., Hooker's London Journal of Botany 6: 584(1847), Type: ?. Ficus nitida Thunb., Diss. Ficus: 10(1786), Type: Not designated. Fide Chew (1989) Fl. Australia 3: 37.
Benjamin Fig; Fig, Benjamin; Fig, Weeping; Weeping Fig
A strangling fig or sometimes growing on rocks. Lenticels tending to be in horizontal lines. Twigs and branches weeping but not as conspicuously as Weeping Willow (Salix babylonica). Dead bark yellowish brown when cut.
Cotyledons small, almost orbicular, about 2-3 mm long. Oil dots very small, difficult to see with a lens. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade lanceolate, glabrous, veins about 12-20 each side of the midrib, intramarginal vein distinct; oil dots small, visible with a lens; stipules narrowly triangular, sheathing the terminal bud and falling early soon after the shoot expands.
Distribution and Ecology
Occurs in NT, CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 250 m. Grows in monsoon forest and drier, more seasonal rain forest. Also occurs in SE Asia and Malesia. This species is widely cultivated in Queensland but it is not at all certain that the cultivated form originated in Australia.
Commonly cultivated as a large spreading shade tree. Withstands strong winds. Also grown extensively as an indoor plant.